The early Romans didn’t much like the letter K. According to Tommy Thompson, writing in 1942 (The ABC of our Alphabet), the letter was disliked ‘from a standpoint of design’, so they, he writes ‘substituted C for the voiceless K’.
Now Diringer has this to say of K: ‘…the Greek alphabet had two other signs for the k-sound, the K and the Q, and we find in the South Etruscan alphabet the sign C used (as a k) only before e and i, the K used before a, and the Q only before u (Etruscan has, as we have seen, no o). The Latin alphabet adopted all the three letters with their phonetic values, but in time it dropped the K (which, however, continued to be used as the initial of well-known or official words, such as Kalendae or Kaeso) and used C for the sounds of both g and k, the letter Q being retained for the k when followed by a u.’ (The Alphabet, 1968, vol 1, p.419).
My preference is for the style where the upright does not quite connect with the <
If you liked this you might like a diversion on R here.